Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger?

I’ve seen the new(ish) Pope’s name written as Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger. Is “Cardinal” actually his middle name, meaning that his title was once “Cardinal Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger”?

Or, is that simply how cardinals’ names are written?

The latter.

They are written that way so as to distinguish them from people such as St. Louis Cardinal Matt Morris. :wink:

It’s simply the terminology. The Archbishop of Sydney is known as George Cardinal Pell.

I thought I heard a few years ago that “Name Cardinal Name” was no longer the ‘official’ way to write the title, but it seems like everybody is still using it.

Like Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Joseph, Cardinal Ratziger is the proper form to write his name and title. Alfred Tennyson the poet was ennobled as Lord Tennyson; therefore he became Alfred (keeps his given name), Lord Tennyson (his title). Marmaduke, Duke of Norfolk is a similar construction, but since he inherited a territorial-based title, his surname Howard drops out. Similarly, Bishop Joseph Ratziger was raised to the Cardinalate as Cardinal Ratziger.

With almost no exceptions, a cardinal’s title incorporates his surname. The exceptions I can think of are the Papal Chamberlain (camerlengo), who is referred to indifferently as firstname, Cardinal lastname or firstname, Cardinal Camerlengo; and the Patriarchs, who are customarily referred to by their “religious name” only, with a number similar to those of monarchs and popes if they are not the first patriarch of that see with that chosen name.

A necessary add to my post: As was argued here at length the last time a “cardinals” question came up, modern custom is to drop the comma between first name and title: Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Bernard Cardinal Law, etc. But the format for the usage still matches British titles.

Most American newspapers use the convention “Cardinal Joe Blow”.

The Archbishop of Los Angeles styles himself “Cardinal Roger Mahony”

My experience with newspaper usage, in much of the East, is different; perhaps your experience is a California, or Western, usage?

That’s the cardinal rule, yes.

The New York Times ran a story on October 12, 2005 about “Cardinal Roger M. Mahony”

In a pointless addition to this thread, the Archbishop of Canterbury is “officially” known as FIRSTNAME + Cantuar. Thus, the current Archibishop of Canterbury (Rowan Williams), signs all his documents “+Rowan Cantuar”.

Of course, he isn’t referred to in that way in the media or by other people.

Some Cardinals prefer this less formal usage. I suppose it makes them feel more like one of the people. They’re generally terrified of anything that sets them apart or suggests that they’re on a pedestal. If you ever want to freak out a modern bishop, just address him as “your Lordship”.

So how come in British noble titles like “Alfred, Lord Tennyson” there is a perfectly reasonable comma seperating the name and the title, but for cardinals, it’s always written “Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger” without the comma, therefore making it confusing?

It’s a shame that Manila’s Jaime Cardinal Sin has passed away.